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|Chicago Coin Club|
|Volume 46 No. 9||September 2000|
The 979th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order at 7:01 PM on August 9th by President Carl Wolf. The Secretary-Treasurer, Richard Hamilton, was absent due to illness thus Donald H. Dool was appointed acting Secretary. The minutes from the prior meeting were approved. There was no Treasurers' report. The only guest of the evening was Robert Gray.
The featured speaker was Saul Needleman. His topic was "The Chicago Century of Progress in Elongated Cents".
The meeting's Show and Tell had the following exhibits:
Under old business, Steve Zitowski and Jeff Rosina reported that there has not been an official committee formed for the Illinois quarter.
For new business, Jeff Rosina was appointed banquet chairman.
Meeting was adjourned at 8:47 PM
Donald H. Dool
by Saul Needleman
(Presented at the August 9 meeting.)
World Fairs were originally intended to be public international expositions inspiring displays of new ideas, new technologies and new ways of doing things. They were intended to show off recent past accomplishments of the host nation. The two Industrial Revolutions, the English and the Japanese, marked the beginning of this era.
Trade fairs had been held in Europe for several hundred years. The most famous of these was the Leipzig Messe, which was held on an annual basis. This fair was designed to offer local trade wares (often cloth) to the public. The first of the modern fairs was held in London in 1851. Here one could see the achievements resulting from the English Industrial Revolution. Thirty-eight years later, another significant fair was held in Paris, featuring the iron tower designed and built by A. G. Eiffel. The Columbian Exposition of 1892 was dedicated to the transfer of new knowledge from Europe to the American continent. Approximately 21.4 million people attended this fair. One feature of this fair was the introduction of the concept of elongated coins as souvenirs of the fair. There were no more than 2-3 rollers and the designs were rather standard giving the official name of the fair and the date: Columbian Exposition 1893.
What the Columbian Exposition lacked in elongates, they made up in medals. Many of the medals depict the landing of Columbus on the shores of North America, sometimes being greeted by Indians. Actually Columbus landed on one of the Caribbean islands and was not exactly `greeted' by the locals. Some truly beautiful examples of medallic art emerge from this series of medals in which the architectural style of the Fair buildings is displayed.
Two other U.S. fairs account for development of the idea of elongated coins. These include pieces from the St. Loius fair of 1904 and the Pan-American fair of 1906.
The Century of Progress of 1933-34 followed the Columbian fair by only 40 years and was dedicated to the display of what future living would become as a result new technological advances. When did this century begin? The fair marked the 100th anniversary of Chicago as a city. In sharp contrast to the renaissance, Gothic and general European architecture of the Columbian Exposition, the Century of Progress was futuristic with straight flowing lines that suggested the promise of what was to come. Another feature marked the difference between the two fairs: the buildings of the Columbian Exposition were solid and many were re-used after the Fair was over. The Century of Progress buildings were built largely in a temporary manner and nothing remains of the original buildings today. One important difference between the two fairs were the 38,867,000 visitors who came to the fair resulting in a remarkable feat for Fairs: it made a profit.
I was very young when my father took me to the fair; about five years old., but I do have memories of some of the things I saw. In 1933, the U.S. was about half way through the Hoover depression. Hoover had run for the presidency on the slogan: "a chicken in every pot, a car in every garage." The problem was that very few people had a pot and even fewer had a garage.
The Century of Progress actually was a propaganda move by the new Roosevelt administration to bring hope to the people, to show them what was coming right around the corner. This was nothing more than a continuation of the chicken/garage, but on a more grandiose scale. The new slogan was "Happy Days Are Here Again."
The official logo of CPIE was the comet. There are 10 varieties of this theme.
My father and I rode the Roosevelt Road (12th Street) double-ended red street car to the `start' of the line. The rattan seats weren't overly comfortable, but at least you could fit into the seat, not like the plastic jobs today where you overlap your neighbor.
There were large wood bridges which let you cross Lake Shore Drive and deposited you near the Field Museum.
One entered the fairgrounds at the Avenue of Flags where you bought your book of tickets. The Avenue of Flags displayed the national flags of every country that had a pavillion at the fair.
The Avenue of Flags led into the Midway which had a carnival atmosphere. The fair grounds extended from the Field Museum southward along the lake to Northerly Island (today, Meigs Field airport) and westward to about Columbus Drive.
The dominant feature of the fair was the Skyride. There are 32 varieties for the Skyride making up about 25% of all fair elongates. I wanted to ride on the Skyride, but we didn't have enough money for such frivolities.
The Federal Building was a tri-story affair with flowing lines (and it was a temporary structure). I remember walking down the stairs of the central tower with my father and looking out of the tall narrow window that went up the middle of the tower, and looking across the street at the Thermometer which was several stories high and showed the actual temperature.
The Travel and Transportation Building was another `blow-away' type with its flowing towers. here one could learn of the cruises to tropical islands one would be able to take in the future and airplane flights to almost any place in the world. In the meantime, the Goodyear blimp flew overhead. There was a train called `The Royal Scot' which represented England's best of the day - and one called `The train of Tomorrow' which actually evolved into the `Hiawatha' streamliner.
One interesting feature at T & T was the Ford exhibit showing concept cars of the future, and the GM exhibit in which automobiles were actually assembled on a working line. The Gulf Oil Co. had a mock-up of the `backyard' refinery of the future.
The Electric Building featured, among other things, the Kitchen of Tomorrow with dish washers, washing machines and dryers, light-weight irons, ovens, mixers and vacuum cleaners designed to provide more leisure time to the housewife.
The Science Building (eight elongated varieties) was filled with new inventions leading to `Better Things Through Chemistry.' This included new medicines that would cure everything.
History was not ignored at the fair. There was a full size model of Ft. Dearborn (ten elongated varieties), a real tepee village of American Indians, and a large number of Roosevelt elongates.
Though the Clarence Buckingham Fountain already was in existence at the time of the fair, it was classified as being part of the fair.
The fair was a roaring success and was followed by a fair held in the second city of the U.S., New York City, less than ten years later. That fair, like all others which have followed in recent years, was a financial failure. The last attempt at running a fair in Chicago never got off the ground because the aldermen couldn't buy up the South Shore Railroad property in order to re-sell it to the City.
from Phil Carrigan:
I attended two annual, national conventions in August. The time between these events was just sufficient to wash, iron and repack clothes!
The Canadian Numismatic Convention was held in Ottawa and marked the 50th anniversary of CNA. This convention is decidedly small in scale (my guess is 20 dealers and a few hundred attendees). However, it is and was a great convention with a fine and much improved auction conducted by Michael Walsh and the gathering place for most individuals interested in numismatics. One mark of the intimate scope of CNA were the evening visits and receptions hosted by the Mint (on Thursday) and by the Bank of Canada (on Friday).
My experiences at ANA Philadelphia included the always fun NLG Bash (Numismatic Literary Guild) with humor and parody galore! This year the regular Numismatic World Series was suspended but the YN equivalent was held although not without the unfortunate remarks of one little smart alec. One heard every day and repeated within a day about attendance: 4,000 during mid Wednesday, 8,000 early Friday, 12,500 late Friday and likely greater numbers on until Sunday. Seems a smaller city (but not a small city) can make for a large ANA.
from Bob Leonard:
The "Ship of Gold" exhibit right as you came in was certainly a major highlight of the convention, and contributed to much of the record-breaking attendance. CCC member Donn Pearlman deserves much credit for getting the publicity out on this. I saw him being interviewed early in the convention by a local television crew. The Numismatic Theatre presentation by Dave Bowers and Robert Evans of the Columbus-America Discovery Group was standing room only, even though extra chairs were brought in.
Having the exhibits right at the entrance, instead of hidden at the back or in a separate room, pumped up viewing several times. The committe marveled over the number of "People's Choice" ballots that were returned. With only a couple of exceptions, the exhibits were quite good this year. However, there was no entry in the Odd and Curious Class--put something together for Atlanta!
New Mint Director Jay Johnson is a natural born ham, and brought down the house at the NLG Bash. They were congratulating themselves on roping him in to participate in a hilarous skit regarding state quarters, complete with sight gag, but he upstaged the usually unperturbable Weldell Wolka with zinger ad-libs. Johnson also announced the winners of some kind of frequent drawing the Mint had over the P.A. system, something never done before. He is a former TV anchorman from Green Bay, I learned.
Also at the Bash, Ed Reiter performed a very funny song about the Sacejewa dollar to the tune of "Indian Love Call" ("didn't they know that manganese was bad?") and gave a dead-on impression of Regis Philbin in a skit as "Egregious Philbin."
Glenna Goodacre freely signed nice pictures of herself (and my 2001 Red Book), but asked $200 each for the special finish Sacejewa dollars with which she was paid. (I didn't buy one, but many were sold.)
As usual, there was plenty of excellent material to be had on the bourse and I had no difficulty in blowing my budget in the first hour. Attendance was so high this year that they ran out of Passports before I enquired about them, so I didn't get to do that this time. Many new collectors, etc. showed up--I don't remember ever seeing so many before--and I spoke to a fellow doing research on early U.S. coin engravers, a new collector of Roman coins, and a woman with an Ulm siege piece for sale, the first at the ANA booth and the latter two from volunteering at the ANS booth.
All in all, a wildly successful convention. Interest in this hobby is exploding, and we need to recruit a few of these new collectors for the Club to keep them interested and broaden their horizons. This is a challenge for the board. A few years ago, Drew Mychyeta wanted to do something to encourage young collectors. We never did, but it doesn't matter now; there's an army of them out there. The challenge now is to figure out how to get them to join and attend meetings.
from Paul Hybert:
I did not plan as well as I thought I had, for my first time in Pennsylvania. Took my laptop computer, digital camera, and many cables; but left the power cable at home -- then wasted hours finding one. Had downloaded the events schedule while still at home, and even highlighted what I wanted to see -- but was so busy that I missed half of them, even two by club members.
The final attendance was over 20,000; that made for a crowded bourse. (That is more than twice as many as we had last year at Rosemont.) The Gallery Mint Museum used their large area to showcase their equipment, people, and procedures; they also had the first steam-powered coin press from the Philadelphia mint, and it was used to strike some copper medals. (The press now is electrified, and has a new home at ANA headquarters.)
I spent all my money, joined two more clubs (CSNS and NBS), took some notes in a research area, and reached a preliminary agreement on a different project; I should have arrived earlier and stayed later!
|Date:||September 13, 2000|
|Location:||Bank One Plaza Building (formerly the First National Bank Building) 18th Floor, on Dearborn between Madison and Monroe. Enter the building at the South entrance of the Dearborn side, sign in at the security desk and take the elevator to the 18th floor.|
|Featured Program:||Cliff Priest - Stocks and Bonds Depicting Buildings and Scenes in Chicago|
|Will have stock and bond certificates that depict buildings and scenes in Chicago. Some are buildings that were envisioned and not built as depicted, while some are as they actually were. Several will be companies that rented space in a building BUT hinted they owned the building. Others will be scenes in Chicago.|
|Sep||8-10||Central States Numismatic Society Fall Convention, at the Ramada Inn, 17040 S. Halsted (I-80 and Rte. 1), Harvey, IL|
|Sep||13||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Cliff Priest on Stocks and Bonds Depicting Buildings and Scenes in Chicago.|
|Oct||11||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - TBA on TBA.|
|Nov||8||CCC Meeting - Club Auction - no speaker|
|October||13||Bernard L. Schwartz||1986|
|October||14||Joel J. Reznick||1981|
|October||14||Warren G. Schultz|
ECE Dept, IIT
3301 S. Dearborn
Chicago, IL 60616
|Carl Wolf||- President|
|Steven Zitowsky||- First Vice President|
|Robert Feiler||- Second Vice President|
|Other positions held are:|
|Richard Hamilton||- Secretary Treasurer|
|Paul Hybert||- Chatter Editor|
|Phil Carrigan||- Archivist|